How To Cut A Pine Tree Down

There are several reasons you may have for wanting to cut down your pine tree. It could be that it is infested with pests, it poses a threat to your building, or you just need the extra space.

If you want to learn how to cut a pine tree down yourself, then keep reading!

Cutting Down A Pine Tree Down

Keep in mind that you have the option of hiring some help for this, but since you’re reading this article, I’m guessing you would like to have it cut down yourself.

Then again, help isn’t free, it’ll cost you quite a decent sum, so doing it yourself isn’t a bad idea right? Especially when I’m here to help!

Items You Will Need To Cut Down A Pine Tree

Of course, you’re not going to cut a pine tree down with just an ax, there are items you’ll need to make the job easier and safer.

Here they are –

  • Gloves for heavy-duty tasks
  • Pruning shears
  • Protective goggles (for eye protection)
  • Headphones (to insulate the noise from the chainsaw)
  • Chainsaw

Things To Consider Before You Cut Down A Pine Tree

Tree felling isn’t the same as plucking a rose from a garden, this is a more complicated and dangerous job.

For this reason, you have to consider certain things before you lift that chainsaw!

Here are the things you need to consider first –

Safety Of Your Surrounding

The first thing you need to keep in mind is the safety of the people in your immediate surroundings.

Make sure the surrounding area around the tree is cleared. You don’t want anyone around when the tree falls.

Keep in mind that it isn’t just human life that needs to be kept safe, your property should be safe too.

Drive your car away from the area to be sure the tree doesn’t land on it. For immovable objects like your house, you also need to keep it safe from the tree’s fall.

You can do this by cutting from an angle that will cause the tree to fall in another direction other than where your home is. You can also use ropes and some extra hands to guide the falling tree away from your building.

Your Safety

Now that you’ve made sure your immediate environment is safe, you need to protect yourself too.

You have to get a pair of goggles to protect your eyes from flying chipped wood. You also need to protect your ears from the chainsaw’s noise. Lastly, you’ll need a pair of heavy-duty gloves to protect your hands from blisters.


Another important thing to consider is the state, city, or county permits. Many states have made it mandatory to have a permit before you cut down trees.

Visit your local council and go through their ordinances regarding tree cutting, just to be sure you’re not breaking any laws.


Different tools for different cutting tasks right? You have to choose the right tools for cutting pine trees.

I have already listed what you will need above.

How Far The Tree Will Fall

This is an unavoidable piece of data you just have to calculate. Clearing the spaces is fine, but knowing how far the tree will fall is also important.

I will discuss this aspect later in the article.

How To Cut A Pine Tree Step By Step

Now that you’ve got your tools in check, and have had all important factors considered, let’s proceed!

Step 1 – Clear The Space

Remember, the tree will fall when it’s cut, and it has to land somewhere!

Be sure that the surrounding areas are clear before you start cutting. Also, be sure you have enough space to get out of the way when the tree is falling.

Step 2 – Clear The Cutting Area

The area where you will cut the tree from has to be free of all bushes, shrubs, and any other form of vegetation that will hinder you from making a clean cut.

Use a pair of pruning shears for this task. Clear the area so your chainsaw can properly do its job.

Remember to put on your gloves while working with your shears. You don’t want any blisters to do you?

Step 3 – Make The First Cut

Now, this is where the real business starts. You have to get your cut right if you want the fall to go as planned.

Here’s what you’ll do – Make the first cut facing the direction where you want the tree to fall.

Remember to keep the cut as horizontal as possible, the saw should also go one-third into the tree.

While you’re doing this, be sure you have on your protective goggles (or face mask). You should also put on your hand gloves, as well as your headphones to protect your ears from the chainsaw’s loud noise.

Step 4 – Make The Second Cut

Now that the first cut is nicely and smoothly done, proceed to make the second cut.

Just like the first cut, the second cut should also face the direction where you want the tree to fall, but this particular cut should be made above the first cut.

The second cut isn’t going to be horizontal, instead, cut down to a 45° angle so that the second cut stops at the tip of the end of the first cut.

This cut should form a triangular wedge on the tree, which you can take off.

Step 5 – Make The Last Cut

The last cut should be made on the opposite side of the first and second cut.

It should also be about two inches above the first cut. Use the chainsaw and cut gradually through the pine tree. As the saw approaches the tip of the triangular wedge, it will start to fall.

Step 6 – Move Away From The Falling Tree

As the tree begins to fall, turn off the chainsaw and move to a distance safe from the falling tree.

Remember I asked that you turn off the chainsaw before you move! It would be unwise to run with such a sharp power tool still turned on. You could harm yourself or anyone you run into.

So there you have it, that’s how to cut a pine tree down in 6 easy steps. Remember, if you’re not up for it then you can hire a professional to do it for you!

How To Measure How Far A Tree Will Fall

Knowing how far a tree will fall after cutting is one of the most important parts of cutting the tree.

I’m sure you’d be at rest if you knew exactly how far something as tall and heavy as a tree would land.

So, let’s take a look at the details.

Items You Will Need For Measuring

  • Tape rule
  • Straight board or yardstick
  • Marker

With the items listed above, follow these steps –

Step 1

Pick up the yardstick or straight board and raise it to a level perpendicular to your cheek, while keeping it parallel to the ground.

Step 2

Stretch out your free arm to the height of your shoulders, then use the marker to color the point on the stick where your fingers reach.

In most regular sized adults, this distance is about 2 or 3 feet. Break off the stick from the point where your finger reaches.

Step 3

Stand close to the trunk of the tree, and walk away from it, counting as many feet as you estimate the tree’s height to be.

Here’s what I mean – If you estimate the tree’s height to be about 20 feet, then walk 20 paces away from the tree trunk.

Step 4

After walking the required paces away from the tree, stop and turn around, facing the tree.

Hold one end of the stick in a torch-like manner, then hold your arm up and stretch it out straight to the eye/nose level.

Step 5

With your head straight, look at the top of the tree, then move forward or backward until the tip of the tree and the tip of the stick are aligned.

Step 6

Pierce the stick into the ground in a position perpendicular to the tips of your feet.

Step 7

From the stick in the ground, calculate the distance to the base of the tree. You can do this with a tape measure, or by counting paces with your feet.

If the base of the tree is, let’s say 20 feet away from the stick in the ground, then the top of the tree will land at about 20 feet away from its base.

Keep in mind that the method I’ve described here is not going to give you a hundred percent accuracy, being that there are a few estimated figures involved.

However, this is a method that has been used for 100’s of years and has proven to be very effective.

It will also save you money on hiring professionals to evaluate you.


I trust this article has taught you how to cut a pine tree down. I also hope the extra tips will prove useful.

If you are looking at getting rid of pine stump, here is a guide.

Good luck and be safe out there!

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